Boost to SAD's efforts to gain control over Delhi Sikh body

The ruling Shiromani Akali Dal in Punjab, which is trying to gain control over the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) by ousting the Sarna brothers, today received support of Sant Samaj and DSGMC Employee Welfare Association.

The SAD leadership seemed to be on an overdrive to capture power in the DSGMC poll slated on January 27, with Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal going full steam to capture cash-rich Sikh religious and eduational institutions in the national capital.

Coming out in support of SAD were head of Sant Samaj and Damdami Taksal Harnam Singh Dhuma and former Akal Takht Jathedar Jasbir Singh Rode, who invoked the dignity of the Sikh Panth to oust Sarnas and extend their support to the Shiromani Akali Dal.

Dhuma also appealed the Sikhs to vote for SAD candidates to ensure "panthic unity and dignity and bring a change by helping the panth, represented by SAD, in running Gurdwaras in Delhi."

DSGMC Employee Welfare Association President Harjinder Singh and General Secretary Iqbal Singh along with their supporters extended support to SAD in the presence of party President Sukhbir Badal, Rode and Dhuma.

Harjinder Singh said DSGMC employees were not only ill treated by the Sarna brothers during their "autocratic" regime but also faced hardship as the committee neither implemented the recommendations of 5th and 6th Pay Commission nor paid DA or other benefits to them.

Expressing shock at the plight of the employees, Badal promised that SAD would ensure better service conditions for DSGMC employees, if elected, and said they would review and meet all their reasonable demands.

Badal charged Sarnas with being a "traitor" of the panth who "disregarded" the Akal Takht, the supreme temporal seat of the Sikhs, and said he was "planted" by the Congress to weaken the Sikh panth.

After Dhuma's support, Badal challenged Congress President Sonia Gandhi to bring anyone before Sikhs and invoked Sajjan Kumar and Jagdish Tytler to come forward during the DSGMC polls. Both Kumar and Tytler are accused of actively participating in the anti-Sikh riots in the aftermath of former Prime Minister India Gandhi's death.

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